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Farm Share Week 21 (Oct 23-25, 2013)

This is the second-last week of farm share, and the last week for some of you with biweekly boxes. It’s hard to believe another season is over, but admittedly my motivation go harvest out in the fields cools off with my frozen toes. On a warmer note, this week’s bin is just crying out for some good soups. I believe everything in your box would be delightful in one of 3 soup ideas listed below. This week there are some back to back frosts happening, so the fields are pretty much empty now, save a few frost-hardy crops. Delightfully, there are still many different items available and I didn’t have a need to desperately hoard things to have enough for your last few boxes. This time of year I get very possessive of everything grown on the farm that’s in limited quantity. I don’t want to end up giving you 3 types of kale in your box at once, and I won’t need to. Phew!

Perhaps you are eager to pick out your own comfort food staples from the grocery store after a season of creatively cooking the farm-fresh variety we sent your way. For those faced with a limited organic selection (especially in Durham), one of the farm’s owners, Ted has opened up Teddy’s Organic Market in downtown Uxbridge, (www.teddysorganicmarket.com). Those of you from urban areas still wanting home delivery and as much of local produce as you can get through the winter and spring may wish to check out https://toronto.greenearthorganics.com . I have long wanted to create a winter share myself, but desiring to put my best into both home and work life means keeping farm share seasonal for now.

 

Half Shares

  • red swiss chard
  • green kale
  • jerusalem artichokes (not sure about this new tuber? Learn to love it for all the good stuff in it- see a nutrition profile here on this iron and potassium powerhouse http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2456/2 ). Mash it together with mashed potatoes for an easy nutrition boost. No need to peel the skin, just wash well). I’ve even eaten mine in a twist on shepherd’s pie.
  • Buttercup, butternut or delicata squash
  • carrots
  • red beets
  • garlic chives
  • red radish
  • celery
  • green peppers

Whole Share

  • red swiss chard
  • green kale
  • jerusalem artichokes (not sure about this new tuber? Learn to love it for all the good stuff in it- see a nutrition profile here on this iron and potassium powerhouse http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2456/2 ). Mash it together with mashed potatoes for an easy nutrition boost. No need to peel the skin, just wash well). I’ve even eaten mine in a twist on shepherd’s pie.
  • Buttercup, butternut or delicata squash
  • carrots
  • red beets
  • garlic chives
  • red radish
  • celery
  • green peppers
  • red cabbage
  • leeks
  • baby bokchoy
  • eggplant
  • coloured peppers

 

Recipes

This one’s been circulating around facebook and it made me happy to see a recipe with in-season produce! From www.mindbodygreen.com

Harvest Minestrone With Quinoa and Kale

Ingredients

  • 1 sweet onion (or sub one leek- save greens of leek and add later in cooking)
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 3 carrots, finely diced
  • 2 tbsp. Olive oil (or enough to cover the bottom of the pot)
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 cups fresh zucchini (sub for chopped radish)
  • 2 cups green beans- cut in 1 in. pieces
  • 1 bell pepper- medium diced
  • 1 28oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 28oz cans water
  • 1 15oz can chickpeas
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups kale, stems removed
  • 1 tsp. Turmeric (or to taste)
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • garnish with parmesan to taste and chopped garlic chives

Directions

1. Place a large stockpot over medium heat heat and add onions, carrot and celery. Cook for about 5 mins or until softened. Add the garlic and a pinch of red pepper flakes and cook for about 1 min or until garlic begins to colour.

2. Add the zucchini and green beans, season with salt and pepper, add the turmeric, stir and cook for about 3 mins. Add the tomatoes and water, raise heat to high and bring to a boil.

3. Lower the heat to medium-low and allow the soup to gently boil uncovered for 20 mins. Add quinoa and cover for 15 mins. Remove the cover, add kale and canned beans (more water if needed), bring back to a gentle boil and cook for another 5 minutes or until the kale is tender.

  1. Grate the parmesan, add garlic chives and serve (or do in individual servings).

 

Creamy Dairy-Free Jerusalem Artichoke and Leek Soup

An easy and amicable soup that eats a potato soup’s heart out nutrition-wise.

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp. Coconut oil
  • 2 tsp. Chopped garlic
  • 1 medium leek, chopped with greens separated from whites
  • 1 lb. Jerusalem artichokes (scrubbed, not peeled, sliced ¼ in. thick)
  • 3 cups chicken stock (or 2 cups chicken stock and 1 cup plain unsweetened milk alternative)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp. Chopped garlic chives

Directions

  1. Melt the oil in a medium-sized saucepan over high heat, add garlic and leek whites and cook until soft, about 2 mins. Add jerusalem artichokes and sautee about 2 mins. Add stock and leeks and simmer until chokes are tender. Add milk substitute (if using) and bring back to a boil. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Puree in blender until smooth. Strain through a fine sieve (I never remembered doing this and it tasted fine to me). Keep warm. Sprinkle with chive and serve.

 

Enjoy your last (or almost last) taste of this year’s harvest!

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Farm Share Week 17 *Thanksgiving!

Cilantro: adds some zing to Mexican, Thai and Indian dishes, along with loads of vitamin C.

First of all, apologies for missing my post last week. My country internet has been making it an extremely slow task.

Your week 16 list was:

Half Share
-cilantro
-assorted tomatoes (*sigh- the last of the tomatoes)
-celery
-romaine
-spinach
-rainbow carrots
-delicatta squash
-watermelon
-coloured sweet peppers
-eggplant

Whole Share
-cilantro
-assorted tomatoes (*sigh- the last of the tomatoes)
-celery
-romaine

-spinach
-rainbow carrots
-delicatta squash
-watermelon
-coloured sweet peppers
-eggplant
-green kale
-green onions or garlic chives
-green leaf lettuce
-leeks

If the cilantro is still sitting in your fridge without any plans of what to do with it, it’s great to jazz up a salad, in a fresh salsa, or in Thai, Mexican or Indian cuisine. I used my whole bunch for cilantro peanut noodles (recipe at www.food.com/recipe/peanut-cilantro-noodles-172604)

But onto Week 17, Thanksgiving! I love this holiday, as it always brings my families together and involves an indulgent feast of plenty. As you gather with your family, or even if you don’t, do everything in Thankfullness. Just check out the array of foods before you- we are rich like few other nations in the world. Doing loads of dishes? Be thankful for the family that created the dirty dishes, and the blessing of having so many. Take a walk outside and enjoy the vibrant colours of fall alongside the crispness of the air. I am always enamoured with the way the world is lit up before and after sunset, highlighting everything with a golden glow. Also consider, is there someone who is far from family that will be spending Thanksgiving alone? What’s one more mouth to feed, and I’m sure a new face will enliven the dinner conversation.

Now to your week 17 list:

Half Share
-fresh sage (very delish in stuffing or to season the bird itself)
-pie pumpkin
-rainbow carrots
-carrots (we doubled up this week for your large gatherings)
-romaine lettuce
-black kale (see dressing recipe below)
-leeks
-green cabbage
-celery

Note: I wanted to give everyone squash again, but I ran out of room in the box. Look for some next week.

Whole Share
-fresh sage (very delish in stuffing or to season the bird itself)
-pie pumpkin
-rainbow carrots
-carrots (we doubled up this week for your large gatherings)
-romaine lettuce
-black kale (see dressing recipe below)
-leeks
-green cabbage
-celery
-red kale (see Kale salad recipe below)
-sweet peppers
-eggplant
-oregano or green onions
-spaghetti squash
-hot peppers
 
Dressing With Turkey Sausage, White Beans and Kale (from Fresh Juice Magazine, October 2012)

I got excited about this stuffing recipe with black kale, fresh sage, oregano and celery! Much of your box was inspired by this receipe. Perfect for Thanksgiving.

Ingredients
1 cup uncooked spelt (I’m sure wheat bulgar or quinoa could substitute if you don’t have any)
10 cups cubed day-old whole grain bread
140g thickly sliced pancetta, diced
170g extra lean turkey sausage, casings removed
2 yellow onions, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp. each fresh sage and oregano
5 cups coarsely chopped black kale
1 cup sodium reduced chicken broth
1 1/2 cups diced tomatoes
1 cup sodium reduced canned navy beans
1/4 tsp. each sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Directions
1. In medium saucepan, bring spelt and 4 cups water to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer until tender, about 25 mins. Drain.
2. Meanwhile, on 2 baking sheets, arrange bread on single layer. Toast at 300 degrees until crisp, about 20 minutes. Transfer to large bowl.
3. Heat large, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add pancetta; fry, stirring frequently, for 2 minutes. Add sauage and cook, breaking up sausage, until pancetta is crisp and sauage is golden brown, about 5 minutes. With slotted spoon, transfer [ancetta and sauage to paper-towel lined bowl to drain. Discard excess fat in skillet.
4. In skillet, stir together onions, celery, garlic, sage and oregano. Cook, stirring frequently, until onions are translucent, about 8 mins. Scrape over bread.
5. In skillet, stir together kale and broth. Cook, stirring frequently, until kale is just wilted, about 2 minutes. Scrape over bread mixture.
6. Stir pancetta mixture, spelt, tomatoes and beans into bread mixture. Season with salt and pepper if desired. Scrape into 13×9 inch pan, sprinkle with parmesan and cover with foil.
7. Bake at 400 for 20 minutes, uncover and bake until top is crisp and dressing is hot, about 10 to 15 minutes.

Bon appetit!

Psychedelic Kale Salad (from Fresh Juice Magazine, October 2012)

Ingredients
6 to 7 cups chopped red kale
1/3 cup chopped sugar snap peas
1/3 cup dried cherries
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 1/2 tsp. umami paste
1/3 cup slivered almonds, toasted.

Directions
1. In large bowl, combine kale, peas and cherries.
2. In seperate bowl, whisk together lemon juice, oil and umami paste. Toss with kale mixture to coat.
3. Top with almonds just before serving.

This week, choose to overlook the hangups and headaches and focus on the blessings around you. I bet you won’t have to look far!

Jennifer

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Farm Share Week 14

Well, it’s a week of brilliant colour, and I think a good part of that can be attributed to the sweet peppers finally taking on their red and yellow hues. We also have the attractively striped delicatta squash, which has a more “potato-like” texture than other types of squash.

So here are the items for your local cooking challenge this week:

Half Share
-celery
-coloured sheppard and bell peppers (mostly red & yellow, and a few that are still partially green- don’t fear the novel shape of the sheppard peppers- they are sweet and not hot)
-delicatta squash (yellow and green stripes)
-campari tomatoes
-watermelon
-romaine lettuce
-red leaf lettuce
-rainbow carrots
-green beans
-dill

Whole Share
-celery
-coloured sheppard and bell peppers (mostly red & yellow, and a few that are still partially green- don’t fear the novel shape of the sheppard peppers- they are sweet and not hot)
-delicatta squash (yellow and green stripes)
-campari tomatoes
-watermelon
-romaine lettuce
-red leaf lettuce
-rainbow carrots
-green beans
-dill
-green cabbage
-red swiss chard
-green kale
-eggplant
-garlic chives
-red radish
-field/heirloom tomatoes (heirloom tomatoes can be all different colours and naturally have some gashes on the top)

This week’s veggies with fresh dill dip!

So what to do with this week’s box? Again, veggies and dip would be an excellent choice- here is an example of all the great colours you could use. How about making the fresh dill into some tasty dill dip? Just add to some sour cream, finely chopped and stir along with some onions and garlic. I tried making some with some plain yogurt and a little lemon juice and cream cheese and putting it in the blender but it turned out extremely runny. I still took a pic so the blog would look pretty!

Another idea to incorporate your carrots and celery is chicken pot pie. It’s really not as intimidating as it sounds. I normally just chop up some carrots, celery potatoes and cauliflower (if you happened to save some from before) and mix them with a can of low sodium cream of mushroom soup mix and just enough milk to make it sauce-like. Savory herbs like thyme, rosemary and sage along with good old pepper are delish to add some flavour. I put it all in a greased corningware pot (or multiple little ones) and bake on 375 for about 25 minutes with the lid on. Then I take it out and carefully roll out some pie crust dough (not too sweet) to the size of the container(s) and then pinch the sides closed and poke with holes to let steam escape. It’s about another 25 mins. till the crust is ready (lightly golden and firm but not hard). Here is a simple recipe for the crust- feel free to use your own or even a bought one http://allrecipes.com/recipe/best-ever-pie-crust/ . My chicken pot pie recipe may not stay together like the commerical ones, but it sure is tasty. Feel free to comment on suggestions for improvement.

Enjoy the bounty!

-Jennifer